Journal article

The Potential of Deep Roots to Mitigate Impacts of Heatwaves and Declining Rainfall on Pastures in Southeast Australia

Rachelle Meyer, Alexandria Sinnett, Ruchika Perera, Brendan Cullen, Bill Malcolm, Richard J Eckard

PLANTS-BASEL | MDPI | Published : 2021


Declines in growing-season rainfall and increases in the frequency of heatwaves in southern Australia necessitate effective adaptation. The Sustainable Grazing Systems Pasture Model (SGS) was used to model the growth of three pasture species differing in root depth and root distribution under three different climate scenarios at two sites. The modelled metabolisable energy intake (in MJ) was used in a partial discounted net cash flow budget. Both the biophysical and economic modelling suggest that deep roots were advantageous in all climate scenarios at the long growing season site but provided no to little advantage at the short growing season site, likely due to the deep-rooted species dry..

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Awarded by Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment

Funding Acknowledgements

This research was funded by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment as part of the Forewarned is Forearmed project (LWR/2014/072) within the Rural R&D for Profit program (codes MLA B.CCH.8110 and RnD4Profit-16-03-007; round 3, (accessed on 9 August 2021)).